My clients often ask me — what is the right problem to solve?

This is such a good question.

My suggestion is as follows:

If you are working in a brainstorming situation have everyone in the group define the problem (working by themselves) then present each problem statement to the larger group.

Even this exercise will highlight the many different ways people are thinking about the challenge at hand.

Then have the group decide which problem statement is the most original and compelling.

The group should consider — if we could solve this problem then we could really make a difference to ………..

If you are working by yourself then consider using our Blitz tool. This can be done using paper and pen or via the digital tool.

In 2 minutes try and create 9 different problem statements e.g. the problem is that ………

Then select the one which resonates with you as being the most important.

It could also be the one where you genuinely don’t know the answer or if makes you feel uncomfortable.

Effective problem solving starts with defining the right problem.

You may have the best people in the world in your group but if you are solving the wrong problem then it may be to no avail.


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